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20121202
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the whole thing. like the crew of apollo 8, who took this picture commonly known as earth rise from the window of the craft as they operatored the moon in 1968. unfortunately, nearly half the earth was in shadow. an unmanned soviet spacecraft called zan 7 got this shot during a lunar fly buy. i guess you would call that a gibbon thes earth. fully lit by the sun. it is probably a shot you have seen so often you don't think how amazing it is. it was nicknamed the blue marble and it was taken by one of the astronaut astronauts on board, apollo 17. apollo 17 launched 40 years ago today, december 17, 1972. it was a night launch, aiming for littoral valley. gene certain non, harrison jack schmidt and ron evans aboard. apollo 17 launched at night, and when they landed three days later, the sun was behind them. and so that particular launch trajectory put a fully formed beautifully lit earth in the window of the command module at a time when the astronauts really should have been too busy to look at it. here is how al rainer, who could wrote the movie apollo 13 describes what happened. quot
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